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post #25 of Old 03-30-2018
S/V Wyndwitch - Morgan 24
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Re: Romance of Sailing

Originally Posted by Ajax_MD View Post
This is an interesting statement. Over the years, I've tried many hobbies and outlets in search of "freedom" that have failed, utterly. Restoring vintage automobiles, motorcycling, travel groups. None of them ever really gave me any sense of freedom, they only reinforced how tied to society I am.

Advertising sells the idea of cars and motorcycles as keys to freedom, they always show a smiling man or woman tearing along empty city streets or coastal highways when the reality is, you're constantly tapping the brakes while choking on the exhaust of the moron in front of you. In a growing society where the infrastructure is crumbling and inadequate, this is a totally false vision of freedom

So, I sold all of my cars and motorcycles and bought a small powerboat because I grew up in South Florida, and that's how I spent my time on the water as a kid. Then I discovered that I didn't like the stink, the noise, or my range being limited to my fuel tank. I just couldn't get far enough away. So, I started sailing.

Sailing works. For me, it's the only thing that works. It's the only thing that gets me far enough away from society so that I can decompress. Pounding into a short chop in a 25kt breeze is still more peaceful and enjoyable to me than rocking and slamming off of other powerboat wakes in my own powerboat or going insane, listening to the drone of an engine while transiting from A to B.

I *finally* discovered that speed is nearly irrelevant to enjoyment. I love the aesthetic grace of a boat under sail. I enjoy seeing, feeling and harnessing the physics that drive the boat. I enjoy learning and improving the entire range of skills that sailing demands. After sitting in a cubicle all day, pounding a keyboard, I actually enjoy the physical exertion of setting sails, grinding winches and crawling around on slanted decks.

Is any of that romantic? I dunno, but it sure preserves my sanity.

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